Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong: Challenge #5

bakealong-logoWelcome to our December Bakealong challenge. Each month, we’ll announce a new recipe for you to try, along with helpful tips and step-by-step instructions here on our blog. We invite you to bake, then share a photo of your creation, tagging it #bakealong. Enjoy!

December’s here, which means you’re in full holiday baking mode. ’Tis the season for something extra-special: a traditional family Christmas bread, or a deluxe breakfast dish. But during this hectic time of year, the last thing you need is to spend hours in the kitchen laboring over a single fancy treat. Which brings us to our Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong challenge — an elegant yet easy way to salute the holidays.

Back last summer, we were having trouble deciding which of our favorite holiday pastries to feature for our December Bakealong. Light bulb moment! Why not survey our friends on Facebook? We offered several choices, and while panettone and hefekranz had their champions, in the end it was classic American-style kringle that won the day.

What is kringle, anyway? In its simplest American form, it’s a large (typically 13″), oval Danish pastry filled with pastry cream or fruit filling, and iced. Scandinavian in origin, it’s been adopted by Midwesterners — particularly Wisconsinites. In fact, kringle is Wisconsin’s Official State Pastry, and has put Racine, Wisconsin, onto the culinary map — courtesy of its numerous bakeries offering mail-order kringle worldwide.

Making Danish pastry at home can be a bear(claw); think butter-pounding and pastry rolling, folding and turning, cutting and shaping and filling… And all of that’s before you even get to baking and icing.

Suffice it to say, I did it once; never again. (Though those of you with a “crafty” bent would probably enjoy the process. It’s the journey, not the destination, right?)

Still, who doesn’t love Danish pastry?

Ditch the labor, keep the love: Making flaky, tender Danish-type pastry doesn't have to be difficult. Click To Tweet

We’ve devised a way to make a clone of true Danish pastry dough in an utterly simple, two-step process that takes kringle out of the bakery into your home kitchen — where all baked goods rightfully belong, come the holidays.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

So come along with me on our Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong challenge. You won’t believe how simple — yet ridiculously delicious — this holiday treat is.

And feel free to personalize it to taste. Butter-pecan is yummy (and our “turtle tweak” is a chocoholic’s dream come true), but you can top this tender pastry with your favorite jam, a slather of pastry cream, almond filling — be creative!

Let’s get started. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease (or line with parchment) a baking sheet that’s at least 18″ x 13″; or a 14″ round pizza pan.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Make the dough

1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into pats
1 cup (4 1/4 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour*
1/2 teaspoon salt (1/4 teaspoon if you use salted butter)
1/4 cup cold water

*Want to make gluten-free kringle? Substitute our Measure for Measure gluten-free flour for the all-purpose flour in this recipe.

Combine the butter, flour, and salt, mixing until crumbly.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Add the water, and stir to make a soft, sticky dough.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Shape the dough

Wet your hands, pick up the dough, and shape it into a 12″ x 8″ oval ring on the baking sheet; or a 10″ ring on the pizza pan. This will be messy going — the dough is VERY sticky — but just keep wetting your fingers and pushing it into a ring.

Tip: It helps to first divide the dough into four pieces, then roll each into a 9″ log. Connect the logs to form an oval ring.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Once you’ve made the ring, flatten the dough so it’s about 1 1/2″ wide; basically, it’ll look like a NASCAR track.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Make the batter

1 cup water
1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon salt (1/4 teaspoon if you use salted butter)
1 cup (4 1/4 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon butter rum, eggnog, or vanilla butternut flavor, optional but delicious

Place the water, butter, and salt in a saucepan, and heat over medium heat until the butter is melted and the mixture is boiling. Immediately add the flour, stirring with a spatula until the mixture is cohesive and starts to form a ball.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Transfer the batter to a mixing bowl. Beat in the eggs one at a time, making sure each is fully incorporated before adding the next. Add the flavor at the end, if you’re using it.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Spread the batter

Spread the batter along the ring, covering it completely. Smooth the batter with a bowl scraper or spatula.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Bake the kringle

It’ll take 50 to 60 minutes; when done, it should be a rich, golden brown. If you’re baking the gluten-free version using Measure for Measure flour, bake for 60 to 70 minutes.

While the kringle is baking, toast 2 cups pecan halves for the topping. You can stick them right into the oven with the kringle; spread them on a baking sheet and toast for 8 to 10 minutes or so, or until they’re starting to turn golden brown and smell nutty.

When the kringle is done, remove it from the oven, and allow it to cool completely on the pan.

Prepare the toppings

We’re making two versions of kringle here: butter-pecan, and chocolate butter-pecan (“turtle”). Both start with caramel and pecans.

12 ounces caramel, cut from a block (about 1 cup, packed); or about 3 dozen individual caramel candies, unwrapped
2 cups toasted pecan halves

It helps to use fresh, soft caramel here. If your caramels are the harder, supermarket-type caramels, add a couple of tablespoons milk or cream when melting, to keep them soft on the kringle.

You can also substitute your own caramel sauce. And, boy, do I have a GREAT homemade caramel sauce recipe for you! I keep a jar of this in my fridge full-time, along with homemade chocolate sauce.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Top and cool

Place the caramel in a microwave-safe spouted cup, if you have one; it’s not necessary, but makes it easier to pour. Melt the caramel until it’s bubbly, remove it from the microwave, stir a few times to smooth out the bubbles, and immediately drizzle it over the kringle. If it stiffens up, reheat briefly in the microwave.

If you’re using caramel sauce, bring it to room temperature to make it pourable, if necessary. Drizzle over the kringle.

Note: Whether you use the melted caramel or caramel sauce, don’t feel you have to use all of it. Simply apply artful arcs of caramel to taste.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Arrange the toasted pecans atop the caramel, pressing them in gently. Hint: a sprinkle of fine salt over the pecans and caramel at this point is a tasty touch.

Allow the kringle to rest, uncovered, until the caramel has set.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Drizzle with icing

Stir together this simple confectioners’ sugar icing:

1 cup confectioners’ or glazing sugar
2 tablespoons heavy cream, half and half, or milk, enough to make a thick but pourable glaze
1/8 teaspoon butter rum, eggnog, or vanilla butternut flavor, optional but good
pinch of salt

Drizzle it over the kringle.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Or forget the white icing, and make “turtle” kringle by drizzling with chocolate ganache or chocolate sauce. Again, use just as much as you want; having leftover chocolate sauce or ganache in the fridge is money in the bank.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Want to cover all of your fan bases? The kringle is plenty big enough for you to try both simple vanilla and dark chocolate icing.

Butter-Pecan Kringle Bakealong via @kingarthurflour

Share the holiday joy

Look at that golden, buttery pastry. The melted caramel and toasted pecans. Imagine family and friends wondering where you ever found the time to create such a masterpiece.

Just tell them you took up a challenge — the Bakealong challenge. To get you started, here’s the link to our printable Butter-Pecan Kringle recipe.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this Bakealong challenge; once you’ve baked your masterpiece, remember to post a picture, hashtag: #bakealong. And be sure to check back on Jan. 2 for our next challenge.

PJ Hamel

PJ Hamel grew up in New England, graduated from Brown University, and was a Maine journalist before joining King Arthur Flour in 1990. PJ bakes and writes from her home on Cape Cod, where she enjoys beach-walking, her husband, two dogs, and really good food!


    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Julie, we didn’t forget all the gluten-free bakers out there! One of the tips in this blog is to bake the recipe using our Gluten-Free Measure for Measure Flour. You won’t have to make any other changes aside from using this specialty flour blend and baking the kringle for about 60 to 70 minutes (a bit longer than the origianl recipe calls for). Happy gluten-free baking! Kye@KAF

    2. Neil D. Dempsey

      I’m a fan of making authentic Danish pastry the old fashioned way, however, I’m always willing to try something new! This looks delicious!

    3. Jacqy weber

      I’m making this recipe with your gluten free flour. Doesn’t say how much can then gum I need to add to it if any

    4. The Baker's Hotline

      Jacqy, we recommend making this with our newest gf blend, Measure for Measure, rather than our Gluten-Free Flour. Measure for Measure is designed to be used as a straightforward 1:1 swap in many baked goods, while our Gluten-Free Flour usually requires the addition of xanthan gum and possible other adjustments to the recipe. We haven’t tested this recipe with the Gluten-Free Flour, so we can’t say for sure, but 1/4 tsp xanthan gum per cup of flour is usually a good place to start. To learn more about making your own conversions, please take a read through our blog article on the topic. Just keep in mind that you’ll be experimenting! Mollie@KAF

  1. Brigid

    My husband can’t have nuts or chocolate. Can you suggest a topping other than nuts? If I use sliced apples, for example, should they be cooked first?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Brigid, you might want to try topping off the kringle with pastry cream, or sweetened cream cheese or mascarpone, and then a drizzle of your favorite fruit jam. You could also skip the nuts and instead use just caramel and sprinkle it with a bit of flaky sea salt for garnish. Apples may be a risky choice, as they turn brown when they oxidize, which won’t give your kringle a super stunning look. You could try cooking them gently with some sugar and lemon juice to help keep them from browning, but otherwise stick with another one of the options we’ve given here. Let your imagination go wild! Kye@KAF

  2. Margaret

    This dough looks so much easier to make than traditional danish pastry! Can this be used to make other smaller pastries?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Why don’t see why not, Margaret! The baking time will be notably shorter if you make smaller pastries, but feel free to divide the dough into small rounds instead of one long ring if you like. We recommend trying to make it roughly the same thickness and height as what’s shown here, as this will ensure the best texture in your pastries. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

    2. Michelle M.

      Margaret, how did your smaller pastries turn out? I was wondering about doing smaller, too, such as in 8″ aluminum pie tins to gift. What adjustments did you have to make?

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Yes, Clarice, the top layer is choux paste (eclair/cream puff pastry). The bottom layer is more like a soft pie crust dough. Great combination once they’re baked! PJH

    2. MaryLouise

      Many years ago I made a recipe for an Almond pastry from a Betty Crocker Recipe Card that seems very similar to this recipe. I was always a hit wherever it was taken–almond extract was used as the flavoring in the icing and sliced, toasted almonds were sprinkled instead of pecans. Nice to see it come around again. Thanks for the memory and an opportunity to make this again.

    3. PJ Hamel, post author

      MaryLouise, this is indeed based on an old recipe called Almond Puff Loaf. Whether or not Betty was the progenitor there’s no telling — it’s that old! I hope you enjoy making this version. PJH

  3. Karen

    I LOVE this. I have made it several times. It is my most favorite and easiest pastry type recipe. And…. it comes out looking like the picture!
    It is excellent….. Especially with homemade caramel.

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      My thoughts exactly, Karen. I love baking stuff that looks much harder than it actually is – definitely adds to your “baking cred,” doesn’t it? 🙂 PJH

  4. Dora

    Thinking about the prep and baking time, then final decorating, and planning to serve it, how long will this keep? Should it be refrigerated and,if so, how should it be served then?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Dora, you can make the pastry part (complete the recipe up through step 9) a day or two ahead of time. Wrap tightly in plastic and store at room temperature. If the kringle feels soft once you’ve unwrapped it, feel free to put it back in a 350°F oven for 5 minutes to re-crisp it. You can then go ahead and top with pecans and the delicious glazes of your choice. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      To freeze the kringle, bake it as directed through step 9, until the kringle is completely cool on the pan. Transfer to a freezer for at least one hour so that it hardens and is easier to wrap in foil and then plastic wrap. Store for up to 1 month. To serve, let it thaw in the wrapping in the fridge overnight or at room temperature for 2-3 hours. Remove the plastic and then put it back into the a 350°F oven for about 5-10 minutes (still in the foil) to re-crisp it. Let it cool before topping with nuts and caramel. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  5. Eileen Soloman

    Looks yummy! What is shelf life,i.e. is this a last minute bake and serve? or easily frozen and then thawed for serving?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Eileen, this recipe is best made and served the same day, but we bet no one will complain if you serve them a kringle that’s a day old! Another option is making the pastry the day ahead of time, wrapping tightly in plastic wrap and then topping and serving the following day. If the kringle feels soft when you unwrap it, you can always re-crisp it in the oven for a few minutes to bring some life back into it. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

    2. Jerry Beeman

      I Finally took the challenge. Took all day BUT (don’t you just love the “But”‘s) I now know what I can do ahead. Thinking of making one with an apple topping with struesel crumbs on top

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Yes, you sure can Remy! We found that a relatively thin layer (about 1/2 cup of schmear total) spread between the two layers works well. The kringle may take about 10 minutes of additional baking time because of the added ingredient. You can also consider spreading some of the schmear on top of the kringle too, if you really want it to be almond forward. Even a sprinkle of slivered, toasted almonds would be delicious! Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  6. Lois Robertson

    My family want to cut down on sugar, the Carmel would not be a choice. You mentioned cream cheese topping can you elaborate?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Lois, feel free to use cream cheese sweetened with a few tablespoons of honey or maple syrup (adjust to taste). You can spread it in a thin layer on top of the kringle or drizzle it freely. Top with pecans if you like. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  7. Kathy S

    Do you have the REAL Kringle recipe to try? Im having a hard time finding it online. I didnt realize that was of the laminated dough family like danish. PS:
    The best Kringle ever is in Solvang, CA where Swedes flocked. Lovely swedish village.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      We’ll be sure to keep Solvang in mind, Kathy – thanks for the tip! We don’t have a specific recipe for an authentic, laminated Kringle, but we DO have a great recipe for Danish pastry (http://bit.ly/2g7k4wt) that you could use to adapt the version here if you’re feeling adventurous. Let us know how it goes if you give it a try. Mollie@KAF

    2. Sandra Knopf

      Solvang, Ca was settled by Danes, not Swedes It is a delightful Danish town and full of delicious Danish food.

  8. Sally

    If you used the almond filling, would you put it between the bottom layer and the top layer? Our favorite Kringle from Racine is the almond flavor and it has an almond filling and is topped with icing and almonds. If I could duplicate this at home, I would definitely be the star baker at my house. Thanks!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Sally, the suggestion here is to use a layer of almond filling (or jam or pastry cream) on top of the pastry, in place of the caramel. You can then top with toasted almonds and drizzle with icing, just like your family’s favorite. Happy baking! Mollie@KAF

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Try sweetening the cream cheese with a few tablespoons of honey or maple syrup (adjust to taste). This will not only sweeten it slightly, but it will also make it more spreadable/drizzle-able. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  9. Carrie Grayson

    I made the Kringle last night and as far as the batter, I dumped the flour into the pan of the water and margarine after it boiled [lactose free version of Earth Balance sticks] and mixed and beat it with a wooden spoon before I placed it in the mixer and added the eggs one at a time, with each one well incorporated before the next. It rose well in the oven but somewhat deflated [ like a Yorkshire Pudding ] when I took it out at the 1 hr mark. After cooling, I cut it open and there were some layers but not quite like the photo. They were mostly on the eggy wet side like a Yorkshire pudding. Did I over beat the batter ?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Carrie, some deflation is part of the plan when it comes to Kringle, so we wouldn’t worry about that part; and the eggy texture you’re referring to sounds more like under-baked pastry topping than over-mixed batter. Since different ovens bake a little differently, we’d suggest making sure your Kringle bakes until it’s a deep golden brown on top, rather than purely to the suggested time. This will help make sure the pastry itself has time to bake (and puff) all the way through. Hope this helps make for a happier second bake! Mollie@KAF

    2. Lisa

      Thank you for posting. I was wondering if the Rarth Balance sticks would work. Sometimes they do sometimes they don’t. I use butter flavored shortening a lot and wondered if this would work also.

    3. The Baker's Hotline

      Lisa, while the taste will be a little different, either one should work functionally. We hope you’ll bake along with us this month and give one or the other a try! Mollie@KAF

  10. Denise

    Yummy! I’d not thought of using a choux pastry for a Kringle but this sounds great and I can’t wait to try it this way.
    I’ll be making the plainer version with the traditional nuts, and glacé cherries added for color.

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Gail, give it a try — I think the middle might be underdone, but there’s no telling until you test it. Let us know your results if you do, OK? PJH

  11. Meg Manning

    I grew up on kringle from Racine, WI and am overjoyed to have the opportunity to recreate it. Thank you for this treat!

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Enjoy, Meg — you’ll find this isn’t exactly the same as kringle, but a tasty way to approximate the experience at home. Good luck – PJH

  12. Nancy Anne White

    So looking forward to making this next week!
    Thank you for including the Gluten Free adaptations as well. It can be a challenge to find delicious replacements for much loved pastries!

  13. Connie

    I had trouble getting puffy cream puffs so I came to KAF to get help. The advise I received said to be sure and let the flour/butter/water mix cool down to at least 125 degrees before adding the eggs one at a time. My second batch was perfect! Why don’t you suggest that in this recipe? I have made this recipe before and it turned out very flat and gummy and no one liked it. At least not like they did the cream puffs. Why the difference in directions?

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Connie, there are many different paths to any destination. And LOTS of variables, including egg size, butterfat content of butter, etc. I’ve never taken the temperature of my flour/butter/water mixture before adding the eggs, and I usually add them after just a couple of minutes. The mixture isn’t super-hot, so I assume it’s under 125°F (since 125°F is VERY hot, like you wouldn’t want to stick your hand in something that hot). If you try this recipe again, definitely get our your thermometer and wait until the pastry is below 125°F; I’ll be interested to see if that makes the difference in your final product. Good luck — PJH

  14. Queen Babs

    PJ, my understanding is that “Toasting” nuts requires baking at 300 degrees max, and that anything over that is “Roasting.” I think this is to maintain the nutritional value of the nuts that roasting can deplete. If this is true, you would want to toast the pecans separately. Looking forward to trying this beauty!

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Well, I learn something new every day — thanks! Yes, if you want to toast the pecans at 300°F, they’d have to be done separately; if you have a toaster oven, this might be a good solution. PJH

  15. Rhonda Shortz

    You say this is best eaten the same day, but I would like to make it and mail as a Christmas gift. I’m willing to overnite it but would prefer to 2 day mail to save on postage, is that possible? Or is it really not the best choice? If not, is there something else that looks this great that you would recommend? If you think it is doable, how would you recommend packaging it? I can’t wait to hear you answer!

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Rhonda, this really isn’t the best choice to mail. After 2 days in transit, it’s likely to be fairly soggy. One solution might be a DIY kit: you bake/wrap the pastry (tightly in plastic wrap), then enclose the toasted nuts and caramel sauce, plus directions to mix confectioners’ sugar and milk to make a glaze. For a really glamorous yeast bread, try our Cinnamon Star. If you don’t mind a bit of a project, it looks gorgeous and would travel well. Good luck! PJH

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Good question, Shelley. Baking at high altitude can definitely be a challenge and often requires making a number of changes (including decreasing baking temp, leavener, rising time, etc.). Since we aren’t at altitude here in Vermont, we aren’t able to provide tested adjustments for all of our recipes, but we do have a very handy guide to help you think through what adjustments you may want to make. Hope it helps and happy baking! Mollie@KAF

  16. Pat

    A great recipe; I’ve used it for years. You can put filling between the top and bottom layer (cream cheese, jam, Solo pie filling, etc) with two precautions: the filling must be thick, and do not use too much – about 1/2 to 3/4 cup for the entire ring. And be sure to leave a border around the inside and outside of the bottom ring. Too much filling and/or no border will make the top layer slide off during baking. Enjoy!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      We agree, Pat! We’ve also found that too much or too runny of a filling can also make for a soggier than ideal final product; and that the use of additional filling can sometimes necessitate 5-10 minutes more baking. Mollie@KAF

  17. Doris Mehlberg

    Would this work in a paper tree shaped baking pa. I am thinking. I could coil the dough rope back and forth in the pan.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      While we love your creative idea, we don’t think this will work out well in practice. The kringle expands quite a bit as it bakes, so it would likely blow out the sides of the pan. It would probably not look much like a tree in the end; we think you’ll be more pleased with the pretty presentation of a ring. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  18. Dana Siegel

    Is this dough supposed to rise in the oven, like pate a choux? I just made it, and it doesn’t look like it rose very much.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Dana, the top layer of the ring is essentially pate-a-choux and will rise a bit, but not significantly, as the layer will be fairly thin (unlike a cream puff or eclair). It’s also normal for the ring to deflate a little as it cools. The last picture in this post and the one attached to the recipe page itself should give you an idea of what to expect. Mollie@KAF

  19. Annette R Floystrup

    As a Danish-born American, I do wish you would call this anything BUT a Kringle. Kringle specifically refers to the SHAPE of the pastry, not the pastry itself, and the shape of a Kringle is like the classic pretzel. Additionally, the Kringle, as it is made in Denmark, and in Solvang, the California town founded by three Danish immigrants as a Danish-American colony, is never topped by anything but sparkling sugar and some sliced almonds. The filling is an almond flavored remonce and it is typically lightly filled with both sides folded in toward the center leaving a gap.
    All the fancy toppings and oddball fillings in most widely commercially produced “Kringles” are adaptations to the American preference for very sugary sweets. Danish pastries, known to Danes as “wienerbrød” or “Viennese bread”, when made as individual pieces, may have a simple drizzle of icing, but typically Danes prefer buttery richness over very sweet tastes.
    Link to a bakery in Denmark showing a nice Kringle and assorted Danish:

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Annette, thanks for sharing your thoughts here. I appreciate that the kringle I’m writing about here isn’t a true Danish kringle, either in shape or makeup. But Americans all over refer to this pastry as kringle, so for the sake of clarity, I decided to do so as well. Just as the Hawaiian pizza and barbecued chicken pizza we enjoy here are far from an native Italian’s idea of pizza; and pad thai, as served in many American Thai restaurants, is unknown in Thailand, this kringle shares a name with its native ancestor, though very different in both shape and makeup. I’d love to sample true Danish kringle someday; but in the meantime, I’ll have to be content imagining how good it tastes. Thanks for the link for inspiration — PJH

  20. Elysa

    I made the Kringle bakealong this morning! It turned out fantastic! The only problem I had was I took it out of the oven to soon. The top layer was not quite done. So next time I’ll leave it in for the 60 mins. I used sweeten cream cheese and pie cherrie filling for the top. And of course almond flavor. I’d post a picture but can’t figure out how to post

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Thanks for baking along with us, Elysa! There isn’t an option to upload a photo on the blog, but we hope you’ll share one with us on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter using #Bakealong. Mollie@KAF

  21. Heidi Parker

    Made this today- very tasty! I put a ring of almond paste on the bottom layer and spread the top layer over it- skipped the caramel and just added some almond extract to the icing! But I found that my top layer was very eggy tasting- and seemed very fluffy- is it possible I mixed it too long after adding the eggs?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      It may be that your top pastry layer was over-mixed, but it’s supposed to be lighter than the bottom layer. It’s possible that the addition of the almond paste slowed down the kringle’s baking process, so it may have needed more time in the oven to fully bake through. An additional 10-15 minutes in the oven should help eliminate any eggy flavor next time. (Tent the kringle with foil for this last section of time to prevent it from over-browning, if necessary.) Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  22. Ellen

    My mother, from Milwaukee, used to make this recipe but called it Danish Puff. I remember that it was simpler, only a powdered sugar drizzle on top flavored with almond extract and some thin slices of almonds. It was exquisite.
    Btw, we grew up on Kringle from Racine. This recipe could hold its own!

  23. Jennifer Jones

    Oh my I am sooooo excited, my first Kringle is in the oven, nearly finished and it looks pretty awesome. I can’t wait to finish it off with caramel, toasted pecans and some drizzly icing…and taste it.

    I do have a question. I would like to take a freshly baked kringle on Christmas morning to my daughter’s home just 20 minutes away. Is it possible to prepare up until the baking stage the day before, refrigerate and bake/finish it on Christmas morning?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Jennifer, we think you’ll have the best results if you bake the kringle the night before, let it cool completely and then wrap in plastic. You can bring the caramel, nuts, and glaze ingredients to top at her house if you’d like to let your family watch you do the final garnish, or you can finish it at home and bring it with you. Either way, it’s best to bake the kringle the night before as it has to cool completely–and it won’t suffer in quality from an overnight rest. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  24. John Niegowski

    Re: the husband with the nut allergy, how about a homemade granola made without the nuts? Use the basics and tailor it to fit your tastes. Use oatmeal, honey, maple syrup, butter, brown sugar, maybe some minced dried fruits, cardamom or cinnamon, in other words, clean out the pantry but leave the nuts out. Let your imagination run wild! Turbinado sugar is good for extra crunch on top.

  25. Jessica

    I just finished making the Kringle for my husband and his fellow teachers. I have no idea how it will taste, but it turned out beautifully. I made the homemade caramel syrup, which was really the only hard part. I had to return my sugar mixture to a higher heat to get the syrup consistency and coloring mentioned. I also struggled with the butter blended as easily as the recipe suggested. Once I added the cream though, I wished it vigorously for several minutes. I would say my caramel took almost 20 minutes, instead of the 8-10 listed. Regardless of how difficult the caramel was, it tasted excellent before I drizzled it on the Kringle.

  26. Laura Sells

    Let me say first that I really like the many recipes I make from King Arthur. The Kringle itself was fine, but the topping made from melted caramels and cream was not at all a success. My guests were good sports about eating with their fingers–a fork wouldn’t cut through the hardened caramel. I had to throw the leftovers away, because it was just too hard to chew. I like to give the Kringle a flavor boost with a little powdered sugar and extra salt and extract.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Laura, it sounds like your caramel was heated for far too long; the hotter it gets, the harder the caramel sets. Next time, try heating just until you start to see bubbles around the edge. Quickly stir it down and then work quickly to drizzle it over the caramel. Or if you want sure-fire results, you can always consider using a caramel sauce recipe which is guarantee to stay soft. We hope that helps the next time you give this kringle a try! Kye@KAF

  27. Pattie nestor

    I loved the Kringle, but could I leave the first layer out. It seemed a little hard. The caramel sauce was over the top. Thank you for the great recipe. They said it and I were keepers.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      If you skip the bottom layer, you might want to consider increasing the second layer by about 1.5x so you still have enough pastry to support the topping. It’s worth noting that without the base, the top layer may spread slightly, resulting in a larger, thinner pastry, so just be sure to check for doneness early as it won’t take as long to bake all the way through. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  28. Teresa

    I would like to make two smaller kringles to make it easier to do two,different toppings. Can you suggest a cook in time for this.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Two toppings for two times the fun! Smaller kringles will take about 45-50 minutes to bake through completely. The tops should be a deep golden brown color (like what’s shown in the photo here) before you take them out of the oven. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Yes, Candy, though I’d suggest the best way would be to make the pastry ahead, freeze, thaw when ready, then top with the caramel, nuts, and icing. I’m afraid the icing might get runny when frozen/thawed. Good luck! PJH

  29. Elise

    Two notes on this, as I’m making it today. I feel like more experienced cooks will be aware of these things, but feel they should be out there:

    1) When you add the flour to your boiling water/butter, it’s going to foam up. So add carefully, and even possibly off the heat.

    2) Adding this dough to your mixing bowl, your dough is going to be extremely hot, and I think the potential exists to cook your eggs. I beat a lot of the heat out of the dough first and I hope it doesn’t result in a tough finish–but the heat coming off the dough was extraordinary. So maybe beat some heat out, and then add your eggs one at a time.

  30. Nancy Mock

    I had never made a Kringle before this one, and only worked with choux pastry once. This recipe turned out perfect! I increased the ingredients by 50% and then divided the doughs into 6 portions, to get 6 mini Kringles. As suggested in the tips, I topped them with toasted pecans, raspberry jam and lemon icing. Lovely, little holiday gifts for my co-workers!

  31. Barbara

    I am another no nut person, appreciate the comment about using granola, but that is also on my no-no list. I was wondering about making streusel for sprinkling instead of the nuts and then drizzling the caramel and icing?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Barbara, while the topping really is a blank canvas that you can top as you wish, we think the best choices are ingredients that add some texture and can hold up to the layers of caramel. If nuts and granola are ruled out, you might consider using some dried fruit instead: cranberries, golden raisins, or chopped dates or figs might be nice! Kye@KAF

  32. LynC

    I made the kringle today.Delicious! Loved by all. Made your caramel sauce a few days ago…. really good. One note: my kitchen is so dry, I often need more liquid than called for. This time more water in the first pastry layer and cream in the icing. I also should have baked the pastry longer..It looked perfect after 50 minutes but in the end the bottom layer wasn’t quite cooked through. But a taste treat for sure. Thanks and Merry Christmas.

  33. Nancy Mock

    One question for you about the choux dough: when I transferred it to the mixing bowl, before adding the first egg I mixed the flour/butter mixture by itself for a minute to cool it a little. I was worried about bits of cooked egg forming if I dropped the egg in right away. Has that ever happened to you, or am I just being too cautious? Thanks!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Great question, Nancy! It’s always good thinking to pause for a moment before adding raw eggs to hot batter to prevent from cooking them; we’ve found that the kringle batter tends to cool quickly since it’s transferred to a cool bowl and then mixed while the eggs are added in slowly. If you’re still concerned about the welfare of your eggs, you can mix the batter for a few moments before adding the first egg. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  34. Elliot

    Any chance this could be made vegan? I have Earth Balance butter, but what would be a good substitute for the eggs? Thanks!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Elliot, we haven’t tried making the kringle using an egg replacer as they’re an important part of binding the pastry dough together. You could try making a double batch of the base and topping that off with dark chocolate and nuts, as the first layer doesn’t call for eggs. We also have some vegan dessert recipes that you might like to try; there’s lots of tasty choices from Dark Chocolate Cake to Chocolate Chip Cookies! Kye@KAF

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